Source: UNIVERSITY OF PUERTO RICO AT MAYAGUEZ submitted to
IMPROVING SMALL RUMINANT NUTRITION, HEALTH AND CARCASS VALUE WITH TROPICAL FEED RESOURCES.
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
TERMINATED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0219952
Grant No.
2009-34135-20237
Project No.
PR00TSTAR-125
Proposal No.
2009-04032
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
AH
Project Start Date
Sep 1, 2009
Project End Date
Aug 31, 2012
Grant Year
2009
Project Director
Valencia, E.
Recipient Organization
UNIVERSITY OF PUERTO RICO AT MAYAGUEZ
P. O. BOX 9000
MAYAGUEZ,PR 00681
Performing Department
Crops and Agroenvironmental Sciences
Non Technical Summary
Urban sprawl in Puerto Rico has reduced beef farm operations by 40% in the last 10 yrs pushing meat imports to 85%. Incentives are available for increasing small ruminant production because less or marginal land can be used. Despite recent increases production in Florida, most of the goat meat sold in the state is imported. Productivity of smallholder operations can be increased with faster-maturing-breeds, however, this requires a higher plane of nutrition than that for traditional and local breeds. Supplementary concentrates and byproducts for ruminant production are expensive. Also, parasitic gastrointestinal nematodes (GIN) that cause marked production losses in small ruminants are becoming increasingly resistant to anthelmintic drugs. Information on strategies for enhancing the growth rate of lamb or meat goat kids in tropical areas is limited. Although abundant, our typical tropical grasses, do not meet the nutritional requirements of improved breeds. Creep-grazed or conserved tropical legumes containing condensed tannins (CT) can reduce parasite loads and provide supplementary nutrients that enhance growth rates and increase profitability, but these hypotheses need to be verified in research trials.
Animal Health Component
(N/A)
Research Effort Categories
Basic
100%
Applied
(N/A)
Developmental
(N/A)
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
2051610107020%
2051649107020%
2052410107020%
3023820101020%
3073820101020%
Goals / Objectives
(i) to determine the influence of creep grazing guineagrass with or without strip -planted lablab/mucuna on performance of kids and lambs until weaning (16-wks); (ii) to determine weight gains of pure and crossbred lambs and parasite load of weanling lambs stocked on guineagrass or guineagrass-pintoi and supplemented with Calliandra, a high CT legume; (iii) to assess performance of purebred, crossbred, and indigenous goats and sheep raised under grazing conditions with or without supplementation during the finishing phase of growth, and determine breed and feeding system effects on carcass characteristics and meat quality; (iv) to determine the influence of supplementing bahiagrass pastures with hays of cowpea, forage soybean annual peanut, and perennial peanut on the performance and parasite load of goats; (v) to determine effects of adding Carica papaya seeds, Mucuna pruiriens seeds, Duddingtonia flagrans, or Calliandra leaves to diets of goats experimentally infected with Hemonchus contortus on parasite load and performance.
Project Methods
In year 1, thirty six crossbred ewes (St Croix x Dorper) will be used in a 16-week experiment. Lambing will be timed for early April, with the experiment commencing in mid-May at approximately 1.5 months post-partum. Eight (0.25-ha) basal pastures planted with guineagrass in 2006 will be used for the study. Pastures will be divided into four cells (electric nets and stocked sequentially in 2-week periods. For the creep grazing treatment, there will be 4 ewes with lambs in each 0.25-ha pasture, but with additional access of kids to an adjacent area seeded with lablab or mucuna (5% area). In year 2, weanling lambs (weaned at approximately 16 weeks of age from the previous study will be stratified by age and weight) will be used for the study. Replicate cells will be will be stocked with weanling lambs (N=5) for 7-d and 28-d rest periods. Lambs will be rotated through the cells and forage availability monitored pre- and post grazed. Adjacent to the experimental, a area of Calliandra will be planted to be used as a deworming-bank. Prior to moving to new cells, lambs will be provided with freshly cut Calliandra (3% body weight). Lambs will be weighed bi-weekly, and monitored weekly for evidence of parasite infection using the FAMACHA eye chart (Burke et al., 2007). Only lambs with clear evidence of parasitic infection (3-5 on the FAMACHA chart) will be de-wormed. Blood samples for determination of packed cell volume, and fecal samples to determine parasite eggs per gram will be taken from individual animals every two weeks. For objective 3, thirty-two 5 months old pure, crossbred and indigenous male lambs (N = 8; Dorper, St Croix, Dorper x St. Croix, and Indigenous), and twenty-four 5 month old pure, crossbred, and indigenous male goat-kids (N = 8; Boer, Boer x indigenous and indigenous) will be assigned to two feeding regimes during the finishing phase. All animals will be raised on pastures (mixtures of tropical grass) during 5 months (weaning and growing phase) and supplement or not during 35 days before slaughter or until they reach a minimum target slaughter weight (30 kg). Four animals from each species and each breed will be supplemented daily at 08:00 a.m. with a diet containing soybean hay (Glyxine max) and chopped sugar cane (Saccharum officinarum) offered ad libitum (20% in excess of previous day's intake). Supplement will be formulated to provide a minimum of 16% crude protein content and 2.23 Mcal/kg of ME. Both supplemented and control animals will allow a 6 h/d minimum grazing period. Samples of the grazed pastures and supplement (offered and orts) will be collected and analyze to determine nutrient content (AOAC, 200, Van Soest et al, 1994). Animals will be weight weekly (0, 7, 14, 21, 28, and 35 d) or until they reach a minimum target slaughter weight (30 kg) to determine daily gain and feed efficiency. Data will be analyzed according to a completely randomized design with a 2 (animal species) * (4 (animal breed) * 2 (feeding regimes) factorial arrangement of treatments (Steel and Torrie, 1984). Tukey test will be used for mean separation.

Progress 09/01/09 to 08/31/12

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Events: Attended the 2010 and 2011Annual Meetings of the American Society of Agronomy held in November in Long Beach, California, and San Antonio, Texas, respectively, to present research results. Presented research results at the Annual Meeting of the Society of Animal Science held in New Orleans in July 2011. In 2010 and 2011, workshops were held in Lajas and Isabela Agricultural Experiment Stations to discuss innovative aspects of feeding both annual and perennial legumes to small ruminants. In June 2012, the 66th Southern Pastures and Forage Crop Improvement Conference was held in San Juan, Puerto Rico, with 100 participants from throughout the southeastern US. Visits were organized to livestock farms on the north and south shores to showcase technology adopted from our research. Consulting: Stakeholders were given hands-on training on calibration of brillion seeders for improved grass and legume planting. Also hands-on training on protein bank establishment and area needed for feeding stock. PARTICIPANTS: Elide Valencia, Principal Scientist: Coordinated all aspects of field research and data analysis and reporting. Rafael Ramos Santana, Forage Scientist: Supported design, planting and collection and tabulation of experimental data and presented research results. TARGET AUDIENCES: Forage-livestock stakeholders and agricultural extension personnel in Puerto Rico. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
In 2010 and 2011, we assessed feeding weaned lactating females [Nubian (N=4); mean body weight (BW) of 17 kg] either by sun-dried Morus alba (MA) at 4% BW and pangola hay (Digitaria erianthra) ad-lib compared to concentrate goat feeds (0.59 kg/animal/d for the first 3 mo and 0.76 kg/animal/d the additional 6 mo, in addition to pangola hay). Animal daily gains (ADG) did not differ in the 6-mo periods in 2010 and 2011of the study with 46 and 53 g ADG, for MA and concentrate, respectively. Body conditions were maintained, and replacement nannies achieved reproductive stage at 6 mo. This fact indicates that MA can replace concentrate feed in weanling female goats. Substituting with the forage MA can drastically reduce the cost of producing replacement nannies in Puerto Rico. The legumes perennial peanut and calliandra produced similar results with weaned ewes. Participants (30) at the forage field day were provided with seedlings (funded by the local department of agriculture) of the shrubs MA and calliandra to be established on their farms to use in creep grazing studies. Another study assessed live weight performance of pre- and post weanling Nubian milk goats creep grazing CT Calliandra calothyrsus, followed by evaluating two contrasting diets using dried and ground MA produced in situ within the farm compared to goat concentrate feed. Twelve kids (2-wk old) of Nubian milk goats creep grazed perennial peanut and CT Calliandra for 3 mo. There were no differences on weaning weight (17.5 kg BW). However, this weaning weight surpasses the traditional weaning on non-creep grazed legumes by 5 kg. At post weaning, kids (N=3) were randomly assigned to a semi-confinement feeding system of a free choice offer of bluestem grass hay supplemented with ground MA (harvested at 3-mo regrowth and sun-dried for 5 d) at 3% BW and a free choice offer of bluestem hay plus a goat concentrate (600 g/kid for the first 3 mo and 800 g/kid for the additional 3 mo), a management practice used by the farmer for developing young goats. Animals were allowed pasturing 5 h daily. Kids were weighed weekly. There were no differences between feeding systems. Average daily gains on supplemented MA were 58 g/d compared to 62 g/d for those fed with concentrates. Breeding stock was marketed at age 9-mo.

Publications

  • Ramos Santana, R., E. Valencia Chin, and R. Machiavelli. 2010. Morus alba and Hibiscus rosa sinensis fed as whole-plant supplements to growing lambs grazing on guineagrass. J. Agric. Univ. PR. 94 (3-4):279-284.
  • Zavala, D., E. Valencia and P. Randel. 2011. Yield and fermentation characteristics of intercropped corn (Zea mays L.) - lablab (Lablab purpureus) cv. Rongai and Sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea) silage. Abst. Proc. American Soc. of Agron. San Antonio, TX.
  • Zavala, D., E. Valencia, P. Randel and R. Ramos-Santana. 2011. Composicion botanica, rendimiento y caracteristicas fermentativas de asociaciones de lablab (Lablab purpureus L.) y Crotalaria (Crotalaria juncea L.) con maiz amarillo (Zea mays) para la produccion de ensilajes. J. Agric. Univ. P.R. 95:133-149.
  • Zavala, D., E. Valencia, P. Randel and R. Ramos Santana. 2011. Produccion de ensilaje de maiz blanco (Zea mays) de alto valor proteico con y sin mazorca asociado con dos leguminosas anuales, Lablab (Lablab purpureus L.) y Crotalaria (Crotalaria juncea L.). J. Agric. Univ. P.R. 95:151-167.
  • Santos, A., E. Valencia, E. Roman and R. Ramos. 2011. Epoca de siembra y fecha de corte y su efecto en la produccion de biomasa y la contribucion de nitrogeno de Crotalaria juncea L. 'Tropic Sun' en el suroeste de Puerto Rico. J. Agric. Univ. P.R. 95:169-178.
  • Santos, A., E. Valencia, E. Roman and R. Ramos. 2011. Epoca de siembra y fecha de cosecha afectan el rendimiento de materia seca de Crotalaria juncea L. 'Tropic Sun' en el noroeste de Puerto Rico. J. Agric. Univ. P.R. 95:179-191.
  • Aponte, A., E. Valencia and J. Beaver. 2012. Planting date and crop harvest phenological stages effects on biomassa and nutritive value of non-photosensitive forage soybesn lines in Puerto Rico. Proc. Abst. Anual meeting of Aniaml Science. Phoenix, AZ.


Progress 09/01/10 to 08/31/11

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Events: Attended the 2010 Annual Meetings of the American Society of Agronomy held on November 2010 in Long Beach California to present research results. Attended the Annual Meetings of the Society of Animal Science held in New Orleans in July 2011 to discuss research. A workshop was held at the Agricultural Experiment Station of Isabela on the 31st of March 2010 to discuss with stakeholders research results. Invited guests were Dr. Adesogan Adegbola, Animal Nutritionist, University of Florida and Anzu Brothers. A forage field day followed for over 100 participants. Presentations: 1.Forage soybean and other warm-season legumes for improving livestock productivity, Dr. Adesogan Adegbola. 2.Productive potential of forage sorghums in Puerto Rico, Elide Valencia 3.Productive potential of forage soybeans in Puerto Rico, Elide Valencia 4.Optimizing sorghum silage yield and quality, Adesogan Adegbola. Consulting: Stakeholders were given hands on training on calibration of brillion seeders for improved grass and legume planting. PARTICIPANTS: Elide Valencia, Principal Scientist: Coordinated all aspects of field research and data analysis and reporting. Rafael Ramos Santana, Forage Scientist: Supported design, planting and collection and tabulation of experimental data and presented research results. TARGET AUDIENCES: Forage ,livestock stakeholders and agricultural extension personnel in Puerto Rico. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) could be an excellent cover crop for degraded soils in Puerto Rico because of its fast growth and potential N 2 fixation capacity. However, there is little information on season effects and harvest date effects on biomass and N contribution that would enhance its use as a cover crop in Puerto Rico. This study assessed season (summer and fall) and date of harvest effects on biomass and N accumulation of sunn hemp cv. Tropic sun at 12 and 17 weeks after planting (WAP). Tropic sun was seeded (10 kg/ ha) on a fine, smectic, isohyperthermic Typic Haplusterts (Fraternidad series) on mid-May and mid-October 2008. Biomass was estimated in marked 2 m2 by clipping at 15-cm height, and subsamples (500 g) were taken and dried in an open aired oven at 60 grades or 48 h. Ground samples were ground to pass 1 mm sieve and N was determined. Maximum biomass was produced at the May planting (7.2 Mg/ha) and was 18% higher than for the October planting (5.9 Mg/ha). There was no season by harvest date interactions (P<0.05) on biomass with mean yield of 5.3 and 7.9 Mg/ha for the 12 and 17 WAP, respectively. Season and harvest date did not affect N concentration. The mean values were 1.83 and 1.78% for summer and fall, respectively, and 2.02 and 1.55% for 12 and 17 WAP, respectively. N contribution was 127 and 106 kg ha-1 for the May and October panting, respectively.

Publications

  • Santos, A. ,and E. Valencia. 2010. Season and date of harvest effects on biomass production of sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) in Puerto Rico. Abst. Amer. Soc. of Agron. CD-ROM.


Progress 09/01/09 to 08/31/10

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Events: Attended the Annual Meetings of the Latin American Society of Animal Producers held in Isla Verde, Puerto Rico, in October 2009 to present research results of tannins of tropical legumes. Attended the 46th annual meetings of the Caribbean Food Crops Society held in Boca Chica, Dominican Republic, in July 2010 to discuss research results of feeding legumes to lactating goats and of use of sun hemp. A workshop and field day was held in Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, in May 2010 to discuss research results of use of legumes as creep feeding, and guinea grass-perennial peanut associations. Consulting: Forage and small ruminant producers were provided with legume seedlings for use on their farms. PARTICIPANTS: Elide Valencia, Principal Investigator: Coordinated all aspects of field research and data analysis and reporting. Rafael Ramos Santana, Forage Scientist: Supported design, planting and collection and tabulation of experimental data and presented research results. TARGET AUDIENCES: Forage and livestock stakeholders and agricultural extension personnel in Puerto Rico. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
During a 6-mo period we assessed feeding weaned lactating females [Nubian (N=4): mean body weight (BW) of 17 kg] either by Morus alba (sun-dried) at 4% BW, and pangola hay (Digitaria erianthra) ad lib, or with concentrate goat feeds (0.59 kg/animal/d for the first 3 mo, and 0.76 kg/animal/d the additional 6 mo in addition to pangola hay. Animal daily gains (ADG) did not differ in the 6-mo periods of the study with 46 and 53 g ADG, for Morus and concentrate, respectively. Body conditions were maintained, and replacement nannies achieved reproductive stage at 6 mo. This finding indicates that Morus can replace concentrate feed in weanling female goats. Substituting with the forage Morus can drastically reduce the cost of producing replacement nannies in Puerto Rico. The legumes perennial peanut and calliandra also produced similar results with weaned ewes. Participants (30) at the forage field day were provided with seedlings (funded by the local department of agriculture) of the shrubs Morus and also calliandra for establishing on their farms for use in creep grazing studies.

Publications

  • Valencia, E., B.R. Min, J. Muir, and A. Rodriguez-Carias. 2009. Concentraciones de taninos condensados en leguminosas tropicales y el efecto de extractos de estas en produccion de gas metano en rumiantes. Abst. In Proc. Latin American Society of Animal Producer. Isla Verde, Puerto Rico, October 2009.
  • Ramos Santana, R. and E. Valencia. 2010. Morera (Morus alba): una alternativa en la alimentacion de cabras de reemplazo en Puerto Rico. Abst. in Proc. of the 46th Annual Meeting of the Caribbean Food Crops Society, Boca Chica, Domincan Republic, July 2010.
  • Santos, A., R. and E. Valencia. 2010. Biomass and N contribution of Sun hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) on an Oxisol in Puerto Rico. Abst. in Proc. of the 46th Annual Meeting of the Caribbean Food Crops Society, Boca Chica, Domincan Republic, July 2010.
  • Colbert, R., E. Valencia, and J. Beaver. 2010. Herbage mass, botanical and chemical composition of forage sorghum and annual legumes in monoculture and intercropped. Abst. Amer. Soc. of Animal Sciences Agron. CD-ROM.